How to Illuminate Kitchens and Dining Rooms

Progress Lighting offers ways to illuminate kitchens and dining rooms to create a welcoming space for guests this holiday season.

How to Illuminate Kitchens and Dining Rooms

Holiday entertaining is right around the corner. Did you know one of the easiest updates you can do to ready your home for the holidays is to change your lighting fixtures? But before you begin shopping for new lighting, read on to discover ways to illuminate kitchens and dining rooms to create a welcoming space for guests this holiday season.

Begin Your Plan in the Kitchen

Start your lighting plan in the kitchen. It’s the heart of the home, and especially in open plan houses, its illumination can spill over into other spaces. Whether by accident or intent, it is important not to over-light this space. Here's how to properly illuminate some common kitchen layouts.

Kitchen Lighting for L-Shaped Layout


Light layering is essential for an L-Shaped kitchen. Ambient or general light comes from recessed ceiling fixtures, plus natural daylight. Then, add undercabinet lighting to provide task illumination on countertops. Hang a decorative pendant over the kitchen sink for task and accent lighting. Finally, add toe kick fixtures to create a clearly lit path at night.

Kitchen Lighting for U-Shaped Layout

PROG_P500041-020 and P400047-020_3D_kitchen_appshot_WEB-1

U-shaped kitchens have an even, three-walled design that creates balance and symmetry. This layout creates a functional work triangle in the space between the range, refrigerator, and sink. It maximizes countertop space, so it is essential to install fixtures under cabinets to evenly illuminate the counters. A single pendant can be placed over the sink to provide illumination and a decorative element. In a larger kitchen, place pendants over the peninsula. Consider adding a step light to the side of the cabinet to provide another layer of illumination.

Kitchen Lighting for Single Wall Layout

Featuring Hinton

Single wall kitchens are more prevalent in condominiums or smaller homes. However, lighting this layout can be a challenge, and it's a good time to think outside of the box. Try placing sconces or pendants above the sink for visual appeal and functionality. Use undercabinet fixtures under upper cabinetry in a single wall kitchen design to provide necessary task lighting.  

Tips for Lighting Dining Areas

Featuring Astra and Recessed LED

Just like in every room, properly layering light is important in the dining area. Start with fixtures that deliver ambient illumination, such as recessed, flush mount, track or cove lighting, then add wall sconces and table lamps as accent lights. Most of the dining room's illumination comes from the luminaire over the dining table, and it is usually the showpiece of the room. Not only is it the focal point, but it also provides even light distribution and direct illumination for diners. Multi-light chandeliers are available in a range of different designs, from traditional to contemporary, and in all sizes. Use dimmers to create ambiance and to control each layer of light separately. If possible, place the wall and accent fixtures on one dimmer and the general fixtures on a second dimmer. Use the third dimmer for the over-the-table fixture.

Now that you have a plan, it’s time to select your new lighting! Browse all lighting designs on our website.

Recommended Posts

 New Oscillating Fandeliers and Ceiling Fan Design Trends

New Oscillating Fandeliers and Ceiling Fan Design Trends

Continue Reading
New 2024 Lighting Designs

Sneak Peek: New 2024 Lighting Designs

Continue Reading
5 reasons you should treat yourself to new lighting

5 Reasons Why to Treat Yourself to New Lighting

Continue Reading